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How do I make my GitLab pipeline run faster?

Are you looking to optimize the performance of your GitLab pipeline and speed up your CI/CD workflows? We understand the importance of fast and efficient pipelines, and we're here to help. In this article, we'll share some valuable tips and best practices to make your GitLab pipeline run faster, enabling you to deliver your code quicker and more efficiently.

1. Utilize Caching

Take advantage of GitLab's caching mechanism to store and retrieve dependencies and other artifacts. By caching frequently used files, you can significantly reduce the time spent on downloading and installing dependencies in each pipeline run. Configure caching in your .gitlab-ci.yml file:

- .npm/

2. Parallelize Jobs

GitLab allows you to split your pipeline into multiple jobs that can run concurrently. Identify independent tasks and parallelize them to leverage your available resources and decrease the overall execution time. This can be achieved by defining stages and assigning jobs to different stages in your pipeline configuration:

- build
- test
- deploy

stage: build
- npm install

stage: test
- npm test

stage: deploy
- npm run deploy

3. Optimize Docker Images

If you're using Docker in your pipeline, ensure that your Docker images are properly optimized. Reduce the size of your images by removing unnecessary dependencies and files, as smaller images result in faster pull times and reduced network overhead. Use multi-stage builds to keep your Docker images lean:

# Stage 1: Build
FROM node:14 AS build
COPY package*.json ./
RUN npm install
COPY . .
RUN npm run build

# Stage 2: Production
FROM node:14-alpine
COPY --from=build /app/dist ./dist
CMD ["node", "dist/index.js"]

4. Efficient Resource Allocation

Evaluate the resource allocation for your GitLab runners. Ensure that your runners have adequate CPU, memory, and network bandwidth to handle the workload efficiently. Adjust the runner configurations based on the specific requirements of your pipelines:

concurrent = 10
check_interval = 0

name = "my-runner"
url = ""
token = "your-token"
executor = "docker"
tls_verify = false
image = "node:14"
privileged = true
disable_entrypoint_overwrite = false
oom_kill_disable = false
disable_cache = false
volumes = ["/cache"]
shm_size = 0

5. Use Lightweight Scripts

Minimize the complexity of your pipeline scripts by using lightweight and efficient commands. Avoid unnecessary steps and computations that can slow down the execution. Regularly review your pipeline scripts and optimize them for speed and efficiency.

6. Pipeline Caching

GitLab provides a feature called "pipeline caching" that allows you to cache directories or files between pipeline runs. This can be particularly useful for caching dependencies or intermediate build artifacts, reducing the need for repetitive tasks and speeding up the overall pipeline execution.

7. Leverage GitLab Runners

Consider using dedicated GitLab runners like Cloud-Runner, designed for high-performance CI/CD workflows. These runners are optimized for speed and scalability, ensuring faster pipeline execution and reliable performance.


By implementing these strategies, you can significantly improve the speed and efficiency of your GitLab pipeline. Remember to monitor and measure the impact of these optimizations to track your progress and identify further areas for improvement.

At Cloud-Runner, we specialize in providing high-performance GitLab runners tailored to optimize your CI/CD pipelines. Visit our website to explore how our solution can supercharge your pipeline execution and accelerate your development process.